Wednesday 21st April 2021

(3 years, 3 months ago)

Commons Chamber
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Nick Smith Portrait Nick Smith (Blaenau Gwent) (Lab)
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On a point of order, Mr Speaker. I have constituents at Liberty Steel. I have been trying to make sense of its financial relationship with Greensill Capital. I raised the issue of lobbying with the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, and asked him about possible contact with the former Prime Minister, David Cameron. I have asked the same of the Governor of the Bank of England. An answer to my named day parliamentary question of 29 March is long overdue. Mr Speaker, would you advise how Ministers should respond in a timely way to reasonable questions asked by Members of the House?

Lindsay Hoyle Portrait Mr Speaker
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First, I thank the hon. Member for giving me notice of his point of order. All hon. Members are entitled to expect a timely response to their parliamentary questions. In this case, those on the Treasury Bench will have heard the point of order, and I am sure that the matter will now be looked into. If the hon. Member does not receive a response to his question he might wish to talk to the Table Office about ways to pursue this matter. I would point out, and quite strongly, that we are talking about people’s lives and communities, and I would expect that Ministers take seriously their role and duty to Members of Parliament who have been elected in those constituencies. Whatever their political side, MPs quite rightly deserve answers to their questions. There is no reason for Ministers not to answer in a timely way, so I hope that the message goes across clearly to the Treasury Bench.

Colum Eastwood Portrait Colum Eastwood (Foyle) (SDLP)
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On a point of order, Mr Speaker. During Northern Ireland questions, the Secretary of State accused members of my party of making incendiary remarks on Twitter. He should know by now that words in this Chamber have an implication on the streets—we have seen that too many times. He has been sitting in his ivory tower during all this trouble, when the rest of us were on the street, toe to toe with the men of violence, so will you ask him to come to the House to clarify his remarks, please?

Lindsay Hoyle Portrait Mr Speaker
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That is not a point of order for the Chair, but I assure the hon. Member that his point is on the record, and it will certainly have been heard.

I am now suspending the House for three minutes to enable the necessary arrangements for the next business to be made.

Sitting suspended.